PATNA: Two youth leaders from Bihar — poll strategist Prashant Kishor, also a Janata Dal (United) national Vice President, and Kanhaiya Kumar, former President of Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union — figure among the Forbes India list of 20 people to watch in the 2020s. The magazine has projected Kishor as a ‘deciding figure’ in politics over the next decade.
Kishor shot into prominence in 2009 when he aligned with the then Gujarat CM Narendra Modi to strategise the 2014 general elections for the BJP, which pitchforked the latter as the PM. He is credited with introducing the Facebook campaigning concept in India.
Later, Kishor, a native of Buxar in Bihar, helped Punjab Congress leader Amarinder Singh and Jagan Mohan Reddy of Andhra Pradesh.
At present, he is involved in Tamil Nadu to help chalk out future election strategies for Dravidian parties as consultant and political strategist, while helping to plan the campaign for the Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party for the 2020 Delhi polls. He is also involved in chalking out TMC chief and Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee’s Assembly poll campaign.
Kanhaiya Kumar came into prominence during the JNUSU agitation two years ago and his public speaking and power of delivery had created a niche for him in the Left political domain. Kumar, born in Begusarai, known as the Leningrad of Bihar, fought the last Lok Sabha polls from there but failed to win the seat.